When growing up as a hockey player you're told to have a back up plan; not many of us do - it's a game you're born into. Before I learned to speak, I was holding a hockey stick, whacking at everything while hopping in my jolly jumper. When my career came to an end 20+ years later, I did not know where my journey would take me. When I was given the opportunity to begin a lifestyle and apparel brand with two of my closest friends, Travis and Ryan, it seemed like the last choice I would choose, considering I knew practically nothing about it. Initially laughing at the idea, it has unexpectedly turned into a passion that I continually find a rush towards.
Spending most days at the local Starbucks in Green Hills, just south of downtown Nashville, TN with an idea, not knowing what I was doing or what direction we were going in, I had to learn quick - I jumped right in. I'd sit at that Starbucks for hours, some days without a single word or sketch written down. I procrastinated constantly, but I forced myself to sit and wait until something ended up on that page. I found that the majority of this project was fulfilling in the sense that I had never been this determined to learn and succeed at something other than hockey. Now a year after retiring from the only thing I knew, I was sitting at a table, in a different country, learning to enjoy coffee (my $5 a day rental office fee), while having a blast reading and answering questions, and learning terms I've never heard of (thank you Google).
To have the opportunity to do this with two of my closest friends has been fulfilling on its own. It has allowed us to constantly keep in touch throughout the year - maybe more than we had wished. The three of us each bring something specific to this company that connects the entire puzzle. Travis is straight to the point and has a powerful professional business mind that I've been able to learn endless amounts from. Ryan, with the exceptional professional hockey career to date, has helped generate positive energy with his following - engaging with our lifestyle brand and creating it's own community. Most importantly, we believe and trust in each others decisions - we are a team.
Now, within our first year of launching Journey Risk True Lifestyle and Apparel and our Team Summer Collection, we are pleased to announce an exciting collaboration with bartaco!
On one of my many spontaneous trips to Nashville, Travis and I ended up stopping by one of our favorite spots: bartaco. There is nothing like sitting on a patio on a nice day, crushing margs, while having some of the finest tacos around for only $2.50. It's not just the food that gets us, it's the atmosphere and vibe it gives off; it is summer.
Now fast forward another week....
After rescheduling my flight (which I can say has happened more times than not) I ended up back at bartaco with a few friends. The plan was to sit down and discuss the future ahead. Nashville has been a cornerstone in the development of Journey Risk True and our Team Summer Collection; with the majority of our following based out of the rapidly growing city, it made complete sense. Nashville is the perfect niche to begin a business and allow it to grow to the standard that you believe it truly deserves. As we walk in to bartaco, I met Brian, the manager of the location, and he asks "What are these Team Summer hats, I see them everywhere?" Good thing he asked me... We began to talk and I gave him a quick pitch before we went our separate ways. Later on, we invited Brian to sit down with us and by the end of the conversation we exchanged cards. A few days later, I went home to Vancouver and received an email from bartaco's Headquarters in Norwalk, CT. I can't thank you enough for creating this opportunity Brian!
Over the next couple of months we would email back and forth, creating a plan on how we would bring this collaboration between our two companies together. Envisioning this as a tremendous opportunity with the social influence and numerous locations that bartaco has, along with this being one of our favorite "go to" spots, we wanted to make sure we nearly perfected this. Back and forth we went until we came across creating a "Limited Edition Team Summer Hat". After days added up to weeks, we came through and sealed the deal. Once bartaco received the product and were ecstatic with our service - this completely fired us up! We then waited for a portion of the hats to arrive to the Nashville location on 12 South to launch the collaboration – now here we are!
With 16 locations spread throughout the Midwest, South and East Coast of the United States, we cannot be more excited and grateful for this opportunity with bartaco. It's opportunities like this, working with committed and talented people, who strive towards finalizing a collaboration together, based off of a product that you and your closest friends believe in, a mentality that you and your old teammates lived by, that makes this entire process so rewarding. A very special thanks to bartaco, Brian, and Anna; thank you for this opportunity.
Nashville make sure to stop by at bartaco this May 5th, at their 12 South location; Not just to get your hands on these exclusive limited edition hats, but to celebrate Cinco De Mayo! As if you needed an excuse to grab some of the best margaritas and tacos around...Check out https://bit.ly/bartacoxteamsummer online and across America
Enjoy the Party!
Follow our socials! @bartacolife @journeyrisktrue